Bren School of Environmental Science & Management

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Bren School of Environmental Science & Management
Bren School of Environmental Science & Management
Established 1991
Dean Steve Gaines
Location Santa Barbara, California,  United States

The Bren School of Environmental Science & Management is a graduate professional school at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

The mission of the Bren School is to play a leading role in researching environmental issues, identifying and solving environmental problems, and training research scientists and environmental-management professionals.[1]


In 1991, recognizing the need for a graduate school dedicated to the study of the environment, the Regents of the University of California established the School of Environmental Science & Management at UC Santa Barbara.[2]

In 1994, Jeff Dozier became the school's first dean. In 1995, the first faculty were appointed, and in 1996 the first master's students were admitted, receiving their degrees in 1998. In 2000, the first PhD students were admitted. The first PhD degrees were awarded in 2002.[3]

In 1997, the school received a major gift from the Donald Bren Foundation to provide funding for endowed faculty chairs, faculty scholars, visiting lecturers, conferences, and student support. In recognition of the gift, the school was renamed the Bren School of Environmental Science & Management.[4]

In 2002, Bren Hall was completed, providing the school with the facilities and the physical focus it retains to this day.

Degree programs[edit]

The Bren School offers Master of Environmental Science & Management (MESM) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degrees.[5]

Master of Environmental Science & Management[edit]

The Bren School's Master of Environmental Science & Management (MESM) degree is a two-year program comparable to the Master of Environmental Management (MEM) degree offered by other schools. However, the Bren School has chosen to include "Science" in the name of its degree to emphasize its focus on environmental science.

One notable aspect of the master's program at the Bren School is the group project. The master's thesis for MESM candidates consists of a project, usually proposed by an agency or company having a local, statewide, nationwide, or international presence. Group projects begin during the spring quarter of the first year of study, and culminate in a final presentation to the Bren community, project stakeholders, and local professionals.[6]

PhD in Environmental Science & Management[edit]

The Bren School's PhD program is designed to prepare leaders in Environmental Science & Management. The program is notable for its focus on a wide variety of environmental issues.

Research Affiliations[edit]

Bren Hall[edit]

Bren Hall

The school's classrooms, laboratories, and other facilities are located in Bren Hall. Since opening in 2002, Bren Hall has been recognized as an exemplar of sustainable building practices. In 2002, the building was the first laboratory building in the United States to receive a LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).[7] In 2009, the building received a second LEED Platinum certification—the LEED for Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance. This recognition made Bren Hall the first structure in the nation to receive two LEED Platinum certifications.[8]

BREN School interior courtyard, UCSB

See also[edit]


External links[edit]